Natural herbal remedies have been in use for medicinal purposes for more than 3,000 years. Today, more than 80% of the population uses them to treat illnesses of all kinds.
The concept is fairly simple. Find a natural element in the environment and ingest it. See what kind of affect – good or bad – it has on the ailment from which you suffer. Each and every part of the plant, from the seed to the flower, has been used throughout the history of herbal medicine. Natural remedies have been delivered in so many versions – raw, brewed in with tea, topical ointments, and pills. Originally, the uses for these plants were determined by superstitious cues, based upon the plants likeness to a particular body part or because it grew in a particular area. Over time, the practice became more refined. To the point that many prescription drugs available today actually contain extracts of the herbal medicines.
This fairly simple concept has evolved quite a bit over the years. Today, this complex practice effectively treats ailments from headaches to heart disease and the common cold to depression. The first practitioners of natural herbal remedies likely used marshmallow root, which is a grass that can be chewed to treat a sick stomach. Strangely enough, this is probably a practice learned from primates. Who says we come from apes? Similarly, these first users may have used hyacinth as a diuretic to purge the body of excess water.
Cultivating certain plants have become an important role in human society as the knowledge was gained as to which plants treated certain ailments. Eventually, these herbalists began to keep track of what was prescribed and to whom and this knowledge was passed on from generation to generation and to all subsequent forms of conquering societies. Herbal remedies were first systematized by the Egyptians; and then by the Greeks. We can thank the Greek culture for what amounts to the foundation of modern medicine today. They introduced the concept of not only prescribing these herbal remedies, but also recording both the prescription and the result of treatment.
Across the world, different societies took to the earth to seek out their own versions of these natural remedies. Medical concoctions were created by herbalists in India by combining the herbs with parts of animals. In the Americas, the hunt for herbal remedies was driven by spirituality and different tribes collected herbal remedies and passed the knowledge on to other tribes through oral tradition. And in China, where we find the first written record of herbal medicine, herbalist paired natural remedies with acupuncture to balance the ‘life force energies’.
From its beginning as a primate activity, herbal medicine has ridden the roller coaster of being acceptance and rejection by traditional medical field. The use of natural remedies has been documented for over 3,000 years, and in addition to the thousands of years of human testing, the practice has withstood intense scrutiny and real world testing. Though studies continue and remedies continue to alter, herbal medicine has stood the test of time as an effective means of helping humans stay healthy.
Johney Maron, a medical device salesman and active father of 2, is a believer in the power of natural herbal remedies and medicines. Pharmaca offers a large selection of nutritional health products including herbal vitamin supplements and wellness products from some of the most trusted brands in the industry.
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